Last night we had a group of our close friends over for a Christmas party to kick off the crazy holiday weekend. I've wanted to throw a full cocktail party for a while now and finally got my chance. I prepped all week (hence the complete lack of sleep and blog entries) and had about 3 hours after work to get the last minute stuff together. Since I know a lot of you are just as obsessed with food as I am, let's just get right to the menu and the accompanying pics, shall we?
The food and drink set-up before the party got started
Cheese Platter: (from left to right) Agour Ossau-Iraty, Brillat-Savarin and Morbier
Crudite with Lemon-Herb dip
Panko-crusted Crab Cake Bites with Roasted Pepper-Chive Aioli
Seared Beef Tenderloin Mini Sandwiches with Mustard-Horseradish Sauce
Mini Mocha-Toffee Crunch Cheesecakes and Snickerdoodles (recipe from Martha Stewart's Holiday 2005 cookie magazine)
Not pictured: Garlic Fries. Sadly, these just did not cooperate and never made it out of the kitchen. Kinda sad, but at least it was just one boo-boo and not several.
As for drinks, my husband went slightly crazy-go-nuts at BevMo, so the booze were plentiful and varied; champagne, pinot noir, bourbon, and a plethora of belgian beer (stella, chimay, etc).
The food turned out really well! I forgot to take pictures of the table after we had finished eating, but there was pretty much nothing left. Everyone seemed to have their favorite dish; personally I thought the lemon-herb dip was killer and the stuffed mushrooms had a great flavor. I feel like next time (oh yes, this was so much fun that there will most definitely be a next time!) I'd add one more cold and one more hot appetizer. I think everyone had enough to eat, but it's usually better to err on the side of too much food than just barely enough.
Aside from eating and drinking, there was much talking, playing Wii golf and watching several episodes of Three Sheets [If you haven't had a chance to see this show, you're missing out. This guy's job is to go to different countries, explore their drinking customs, get hammered and then try out the local hangover cure the next morning to see if it works. I kid you not. As my husband says best.job.ever.]
We also did a gift exchange that resulted in some fun gifts, most of which were *surprise, surprise* alcohol related. One gift in particular sparked a laughing fit from all of us that made my stomach hurt. My husband was literally on the floor laughing, several folks wound up crying... it was hilarious. I really can't share details as it wouldn't make sense, but trust me that this was easily the highlight of the evening. Mark, you rule dude! My friend J works in PR for beauty companies and the samples she gets are amazing. For her contribution to the gift exchange, she put a bunch of those (rather large) samples in a stocking and called it a day. Huge hit!
Our last guest left a little before 2am and then Jim and I collapsed into bed. This party so put me in the holiday spirit! I'm still feeling slightly ill this morning, but it was so worth it. Thank you everyone for coming over and sharing the evening with us. We had a great time and can't wait to do it again next year!! :D
These were taken before folks started heading out. My eyes tend to disappear in pictures anyways, but obviously alcohol makes that worse. Oops! ;)